Anonymous is back with the 2nd instalment of his search for the best value players of 2019. If you’re a fan of his work, let him know in the comments below 😉 Today we focus on the FWDs………..
(Written & Created By ‘Anonymous’)
Why: a 6 round average of 127 to end the season that’s why (high: 157, low 105). With those numbers, he’s incredibly under-priced and one of the locks of the season. Moving from a non-SC relevant marking small forward to a starting midfielder and the one asked to run with the best in the game, his disposal count went from 18 in the first half of the season, to 29 in the last half. A big inside contested mid who is also a tackling machine, racking in halls of 8, 7, 9, 7, 7, 10, 12 & 7 throughout the year, can you afford not to pick him? Ceiling: 115 avg.
Why not: his turn of form came at a time where McLean’s breakout season began to nose dive. Looking as if he was struggling late on from his season as the Dogs tackling machine, McLean scored just the one ton (112) between rounds 16-23, this was the same game Dunkley put up his second worst performance during his 6 week breakout (106). Dunkley also has to compete with the returning Liberatore, a former SC elite (110 avg in ‘14). Outside of those 2 names, Dunkley is competing with a host of good to really good potential inside mids. Dunkley’s ability to play as a marking small forward could hurt him as a SC pick. in all, the players fighting for 2-3 inside mid roles include, Hunter (no. 1 option), Dunkley, McLean, Liberatore, Wallis (apart of the leadership group), Picken, Williams, Jong, Tiger recruit Lloyd & father-son pick West. If Dunkley finds himself in the forward pocket, he could derail your season. Floor: 80 avg.
Why: Was having a breakout season as the Dogs went into their bye round, a strong finish to 2017 saw him begin 2018 as a top 3 forward with 8/11 scores cracking the ton and 7 of those going for 110+. A niggling shoulder injury and potentially fatigue saw his numbers drop post bye as he finished with just an average of 95. Another pre-season with the midfield group and we could be expecting an improved average closer to his pre-bye output. Ceiling: 110 avg.
Why not: the emergence of Dunkley and the return of Wallis coincided with McLean’s drop in output last season. In 2018 both those seems locks for the Dogs best 22 and when you factor in the return of Liberatore and Picken, it is hard to envision what role he will actually play. Floor: 85 avg.
Why: the second greatest rookie season ever and the mature body to dominate over the whole year, evidenced by his high for the year coming in round 22 (155), another year in the AFL system could see Kelly take his game to another level, all he has to do is find a way to impact the SC scoring system during those games where he’s finding it a bit harder to get the ball (4 sub-70 games last season). Ceiling: 110 avg.
Why not: Dangerfield, Ablett, Selwood, Duncan, Menegola. Kelly must feed off the scraps after the Cats heavy hitters get their numbers, last season he was an unknown quantity but this year teams will give him a second thought, couple this with the dreaded second year blues and the fact that he can throw up a shocker here and there (44 & 48 last year) and he might just be at his maximum price and incredibly frustrating to own. Floor: 85 avg.
Why: Wallis is a player of incredible pedigree, and he knows how to score, putting up averages of 87 or better in 5/8 seasons despite dealing with injuries and constant doubt on his selection. Coming into 2018, Wallis has forced himself into the Dogs leadership group and so one would expect that for the first time in his career his position in the Dogs best 22 is secure. 2017 also saw him add another string to his bow as he turned himself into a goal scoring option as he only failed to impact the scoreboard in 3 games last year. No more doubt on his place, a noted goal kicker, and coming into his prime as an athlete, 2018 could be the year he breaks the ton and becomes a forward lock. Ceiling: 105 avg.
Why not: he’s not a true inside contested mid, an outside runner with silky skills or a possession pig (1 game over 25 touches last season), he’s just pretty good at basically everything. So where does he fit in the list of names including, Macrae, Bontempelli, Hunter, McLean, Dunkley, Williams, Daniel, Picken, Liberatore, Smith, Dale, Jong, West, Lloyd. Floor 85 avg. (And a few games in the VFL).
Jeremy Cameron $441k
Why: Jeremy Cameron needs to decide if he is SuperCoach relevant, the player most similar in athleticism to Buddy Franklin, he’s never quite been as dominant despite seemingly having the ability. Scores of 168 and 120 last season show he’s capable and the loss of Lobb and Patton provides a hole that needs filling. Ceiling: 95-100 avg.
Why not: there’s only one Buddy Franklin, Cameron has yet to show the desire to work up the ground like Franklin, and despite GWS’ silky ball movers delivering the ball over and over again during GWS current successful period, Cameron is yet to average over 90. Floor: 80 avg.
Jack Billings $438k
Why: a strong finish to 2017 and a 133 in round 1 had many astute SuperCoaches’ toasting their glasses to the first picked forward of 2018. A silky smooth ball-user, he’s nearly the Saints most important footballer, averaging 113 in St Kilda wins last year and has averaged 110 when getting 24+ disposals over the last 2 seasons (in 16 games he has recorded 24+ disposals, high of 136, low of 88). Ceiling: 105 avg.
Why not: if you owned him last year, you already know why not, a spectacular fall from grace, saw him nearly bottom out to under $300k last year. Billings seemingly just cannot break into the Saints engine room and with the inclusion of Hannebery and a bunch of other midfield wannabes, if he couldn’t break in last year, what makes you think he will break in this year? Floor: 80 avg.
Jade Gresham $430k
Why: 5 scores over 110 last season and a 13 point jump in his average between seasons ‘17 and ‘18, could Gresham continue the rise in 2019 to forward premium? Ceiling: 95 avg.
Why not: St Kilda are horrible. But they have a host of would-be midfielders and Gresham was one of the more impressive small forward goal-kickers last season, without an increase in midfield time, he may be at his limit. Floor: 78 avg.
Tom Lynch $426k
Why: averaged between 83-93 during a 4 year spell where he only missed 3 games for a deplorable Gold Coast side, this is the cheapest he has started a year for a while thanks to an injury-riddled final year at the Suns. Moves back to Melbourne and to the all-conquering Richmond Tigers and we could very well see the game’s most likely candidate finally break the 100 goal season drought. Let’s also not forget his staggering game by game ceiling, his only 100 last season was a huge 180 in round 2. Ceiling: 100 avg.
Why not: the Tigers forward line is pretty good. Yes he walks into their best 22, but he might not play the same role as he had at the Suns, the Tigers have built a small-forward brigade, with helping from Jack to bring the ball to ground and a back-up plan of sending Dusty to the goal-square for a 1-on-1 battle. Lynch may just slot in and play a similar role to Jack, allowing him more freedom to work up the field like his older cousin Nick, and Tigers legend Richardson did in their later years. Floor 80 avg.
** Thanks for sharing your write-ups with us, Anon! – Schwarzwalder **
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